Skills gap is a major challenge in Southeast Asia: Adecco CEO
The demand for workforce is high in Southeast Asia. However, there is a lack of strong talent in multiple sectors that require highly skilled individuals, said Alain Dehaze, CEO of the Adecco Group.
“People skills as services have become increasingly important,” Dehaze said. “The shortage of talent is a situation and organizations need to do careful talent planning.”
Workforce in Southeast Asian countries is less mobile as compared to others, according to the Swiss staffing company. Nations such as Indonesia and India have various sectors in the economy that have unorganized workforce management.
Even though these countries have a large labour capital available, there is a skills gap particularly in jobs requiring highly skilled workforce such as robotics, IT, healthcare, analytics, automation etc. Bridging these skills gaps is crucial to maintain high productivity in the economy.
A balance between demand and supply of the skilled labour in the required fields can be achieved when governments, industrial leaders and educational leaders work in tandem to achieve symbiotic talent management. For example, Thailand’s governmental heads and academics in addition to business leaders need to foster greater cooperation and establish some common benchmarks to train people to perform optimally in various industries.
Regulations that motivate businesses and make the workforce flexible will help in taking the economy of such countries to new heights.
Educators must focus on how their students can be trained for the jobs that are available and build a culture of continuous learning, Dehaze said.
Dehaze also added that at the school level itself, educators can train students to be “comfortable with change” and maintain their strength in a high work-prpressure environment because the future jobs are going to require constant learning, relearning and upskilling oneself.
Strategic development of local talent can only happen by adopting “progressive HR practices” that will incorporate freelance, part-time and flexible contracts for employees. This will ensure a mobile workforce in the region.